I have wide ranging research interests, but my current projects include:

The Ethics of Optimality: Values and Formalization in Social Decision-Making
This project considers a class of decision methods such as cost-benefit analysis (CBA), in which advantages and aggregated and compared, and the problem that such methods ignore “fundamental ethical norms” such as justice, fairness, and equity. Among responses to the problem, the sharpest contrast is between strategies seeking to preserve the formal structure of optimality — for example, by reframing the input so that “gains” and losses” refer not only to individual well-being but also to the satisfaction of citizens’ ethical commitments — and methods that reject the use of optimality as an overall decision method, instead treating the results of optimality as just one factor among others to be weighed and balanced in a more open-ended decision process. I draw on work in ethical theory, metaethics, philosophy of economics, health economics, and legal theory to evaluate these responses, both theoretically and in the applied context of health care resource allocation.

Formalization and Mathematization in Economics
It is often said that economics is “too formalistic,” but there are many ways to interpret formalism in this context. This project draws on foundations of mathematics, axiomatization in science, feminist philosophy, and epistemologies of ignorance to consider the function of “minimal” or highly idealized models, the benefits and dangers of mathematization in social science, and how philosophy of applied mathematics bears on the economics context.

Algorithmic Racial Discrimination: a Social Impact Approach
This paper, co-authored with Alysha Kassam, contributes to debates over algorithmic discrimination with particular attention to structural theories of racism and the problem of “proxy discrimination” — discriminatory effects that arise even when an algorithm has no information about socially sensitive features such as race. How should a structural understanding of racism and oppression inform our understanding of algorithmic discrimination and its associated norms?

My first book Moral Reasoning in a Pluralistic World (McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2015) addresses the question: How should we reason morally in a pluralistic world, in which we share multiple values (honesty, fairness, benevolence etc.) but interpret and prioritize these in different ways?

Reviews of Moral Reasoning in a Pluralistic World:

My second book  Philosophy of Sex and Love: An Opinionated Introduction (Routledge Press, 2019), explores basic issues surrounding sex and love in today’s world, such as consent, objectification, non-monogamy, racial stereotyping, and the need to reconcile contemporary expectations about gender equality with our beliefs about how love works.



Philosophy of Sex and Love: An Opinionated Introduction (Routledge Press, 2019) [Amazon, Indigo].

Moral Reasoning in a Pluralistic World (McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2015) [Amazon, Indigo].

Selected articles and book chapters 

Algorithmic Racial Discrimination: A Social Impact Approach” (co-authored with Alysha Kassam), Feminist Philosophy Quarterly 8 (2022).

“Objectification: Conceptual and Normative Groundwork” in Clare Chambers, Brian Earp, and Lori Watson, Routledge Handbook on the Philosophy of Sex and Sexuality (Routledge, 2022).

“Sexual Use, Sexual Autonomy, and Adaptive Preferences: A Social Approach to Sexual Objectification,” in David Boonin, ed., Palgrave Handbook of Sexual Ethics (Palgrave, 2022).

“Value Pluralism and the Foundations of Normative Law and Economics: The Case of Threshold Deontology,” Magdalena Małecka and Peter Cserne, eds., Law and Economics as Interdisciplinary Exchange (Routledge, 2020) [postprint].

“What Is the ‘Social’ in “Social Coherence?” Commentary on Nelson Tebbe’s Religious Freedom in an Egalitarian Age, Journal of Civil Rights and Economic Development 31 (2018) [link, postprint].

“Value Pluralism, Moral Diversity, Moral Reasoning, and the Foundations of Bioethics,” Journal of Ethics, Medicine and Public Health 3/4 (2017), 477-485 [link, postprint].

“Love and Economics,” in Christopher Grau and Aaron Smuts, eds., Oxford Handbook for the Philosophy of Love (Oxford University Press, forthcoming) [linkpreprint].

“Ethical Implications of Scientific Imperialism: Two Examples from Economics,” in Manuela Fernández Pinto and Uskali Mäki, eds., Scientific Imperialism: Exploring the Boundaries of Interdisciplinarity (Routledge, 2017) [preprint].

“Internal to What? Contemporary Naturalism and Putnam’s Model Theoretic Argument” in Sandy Goldberg, ed., The Brain in a Vat (Cambridge University Press, 2016) [preprint].

“Philosophy of Sex,” Philosophy Compass 9/1 (2014), 22-32 [link, preprint].

“Moral Coherence and Principle Pluralism,” Journal of Moral Philosophy 11/6 (2014), 727–749 [link, postprint].

“Moral Coherence and Value Pluralism,” Canadian Journal of Philosophy 43 (2013), 117-135 [link, postprint].

“Ambivalence, Valuational Inconsistency, and the Divided Self,” Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 83 (2011), 41-71 [link] [post-print].

“Moral Rationalism and the Normative Status of Desiderative Coherence,” The Journal of Moral Philosophy 7 (2010), pp. 227-252 [link, post-print].

“Representation-Friendly Deflationism vs. Modest Correspondence” in Cory Wright and Nikolaj Pedersen, eds., New Waves in Philosophy: Truth (New York: Palgrave McMillan, 2010), 218-231 [post-print].

“On Essentially Conflicting Desires,” The Philosophical Quarterly 59 (2009), 274-291 [link, post-print].

Toward a Modest Correspondence Theory of Truth: Predicates and Properties,” Dialogue: Canadian Philosophical Review 41 (2008), 81-102 [link, post-print].

“The Ethics of Sexual Objectification: Autonomy and Consent” Inquiry 51 (2008), 345 – 364 [link, post-print].

Seeking Desire: Reflections on Blackburn’s Lust,” Social Philosophy Today 22 (2007), 219-230 [link, post-print].

“Expressivism, Logic, Consistency, and Moral Dilemmas,” Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 9 (2006), 517-533 [link, post-print].

“What Should a Correspondence Theory Be and Do?” Philosophical Studies, 127 (2006), 415-457 [link, post-print].

“Expressivism, Deflationism, and Correspondence,” The Journal of Moral Philosophy, 2 (2005), 171-191 [link, post-print].

“Moral Dilemmas, Collective Responsibility, and Moral Progress,” Philosophical Studies, 104 (2001), 203-225 [link, post-print].


Review of Laurie Shrage, You’ve Changed”: Sex Reassignment and Personal Identity, Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews, January 8, 2010 [link to review at NDPR site].

Review of Mario Perniola, The Sex Appeal of the Inorganic: Philosophies of Desire in the Modern World (Massimo Verdicchio, translator), Journal of the History of Philosophy 19 (2010), pp. 179-182 [link], [post-print].

Review of Monique Canto-Sperber, Moral Disquiet and Human Life (Silvia Pavel, translator), Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews, October 4, 2008 [link to review at NDPR site].

Review of Anne Dufourmantelle, Blind Date: Sex and Philosophy (Catherine Porter, translator), APA Newsletter on Feminism and Philosophy, 8 (2008), 23-24 [post-print].

Review of John Bell, Set Theory: Boolean-valued Models and Independence Proofs, 3/e, Philosophia Mathematica III 14 (2006), 392-394 [link, post-print].

Encyclopedia article

“Sex Work,” in Hugh LaFollette, ed., The International Encyclopedia of Ethics (Blackwell, 2013; revised version 2016 ) [link].

Selected talks and conference presentations

“Discrimination and ‘Social Values’ in Cost-Effectiveness Analysis: The Case of the QALY, Meeting of the Eastern Division of the American Philosophical Association, January 2023.

“Cost-Benefit Analysis, Ethical Values, and Other-Regarding Preferences,” 
Philosophy, Politics and Economics Society Meeting, November 2022

“The Boundaries of Cost-Benefit Analysis in Normative Law and Economics, “Legal Theory Workshop, USC June 2022.

“Cost-Effectiveness Analysis and Community Values in Health Care Resource Allocation,” NYU Philosophical Bioethics Workshop, April 2022.

“Credibility is in the Eye of the Beholder: Minimal Models and Feminist Epistemology.”
Meeting of the PPE Society at the American Philosophical Association, Eastern Division Meeting 2022

“On the Use of Mathematics in Economics: Formalism, Fit, and Physics” American Philosophical Association, Eastern Division Meeting 2021. [Handout]

Commentary on Allen Buchanan and Russell Powell, The Evolution of Moral Progress.
American Philosophical Association, Central Division Meeting 2020. [Marino comments on Evo Moral Prog].

Comments on Brian Weatherson’s Normative Externalism, Ryerson University, December 6, 2019. [Marino on BW book].

Commentary on Colin Marshall Colin Marshall’s Compassionate Moral Realism
American Philosophical Association, Pacific Division Meeting 2019.

“Anti-Formalism in Philosophy of Economics: Mathematical Foundations or Mathematical Style?” Society for Exact Philosophy, 2019; CSHPS, June 2019; Midwest Philosophy of Mathematics Conference, Notre Dame, November 2019.

“Moral Pluralism, Disagreement, and Informed Consent,” Canadian Philosophical Association June 2, 2019; CSWIP at the University of Guelph, October 2019; Romanell Workshop at the University at Buffalo, November 2019.

Commentary on Michael Da Silva’s “In Defense of an Explanatoriness Criterion for Moral Philosophy” at the CPA. Text of CPA comment Da Silva

Values, Gender, and the Economics of Love, Keynote at the Women and Academia conference, Department of Logic and Philosophy of Science, University of California, Irvine, May 2019.

“Algorithmic Ethics and Racial Discrimination,” Business Ethics in the 6ix, May 16, 2019.

Comments on Colin Marshall’s Compassionate Moral Realism, Pacific APA April 2019. Marino comment on CMR.

“Ethics, Economics Imperialism, and Values in Science, “PPE Society Conference, March 30, 2019.

“Moderate Deontology, Arbitrariness, and the Problem of the Threshold,” American Philosophical Association, Eastern Division Meeting, January 8, 2019.

“Underdetermination, Methodology, and Normativity in Distinguishing Rational from Irrational Behavior,” Joint conference of the European Network for the Philosophy of Social Science and the Philosophy of Social Science Roundtable, Hannover, Germany, August 31, 2018.”

Value Pluralism and the Epistemological Status of Economic Consequentialism.”
4th International Conference on “Economic Philosophy”: Norms and Normativity, June 28, 2018.

“Deontological Pluralism and its Consequentialist Critics.”
University of Helsinki Department of Practical Philosophy colloquium series, June 6, 2018.

Comments on Waheed Hussain’s “A Dynamical View of Corporate Authority.”
Business Ethics in the 6ix, May 14, 2018.

Science, Sex, and the Search for a “Female Viagra.” University of Windsor, March 2018 [handout]

“Sexual Decision-Making and Relational Theories of Autonomy,” XXXVth International Congress on Law and Mental Health, Prague, Czech Republic, July 14, 2017.

“Response to Critics,” Author-meets-critics session on my Moral Reasoning in a Pluralistic World. Canadian Philosophical Association annual meeting, May 28, 2017.

Comments on Carrie Jenkins’s What Love Is and What It Ought to Be, author-meets-critics session. Canadian Philosophical Association annual meeting, May 30, 2017.

“Value Pluralism, Challenges to Consequentialism, and the Law and Economics Movement, ” Brooklyn Law School, Faculty Workshop Series, February 16, 2017,  Workshop in Methodology in Applied Ethics, Georgetown University, February 26, 2017, Association for the Study of Law, Culture, and the Humanities annual conference, April 1, 2017, and MetaLawEcon Workshop on Law and Economics: Theoretical and Practical Dimensions of Interdisciplinarity, TINT, University of Helsinki. November 9, 2017.

Commentary on Nelson Tebbe’s Religious Freedom in an Egalitarian Age at a roundtable symposium at St. John’s Law School, September 16, 2016.

“Economic Explanation Ambiguity and Its Normative Implications,” North American Society for Social Philosophy, Thirty-Third International Social Philosophy Conferences, July 2016 and Western University Philosophy Department colloquium series, April 21, 2017.

“Affirmative Consent and Female Desire,” Meeting of the Society for the Philosophy of Sex and Love at the American Philosophical Association Pacific Division Meeting, April 12, 2017 and Conference on Consent and Coercion in the Sexual Sphere, University of Virginia, April 15, 2016.

“Economic Explanation Ambiguity and Its Normative Implications,” North American Society for Social Philosophy, Thirty-Third International Social Philosophy Conferences, July 2016.

“Objectification, Mutuality, and Autonomy,” Conference in honor of Alan Goldman, College of William and Mary, September 5, 2015.

“Ethical Implications of Economics Imperialism: Two Examples, Workshop on Scientific Imperialism, TINT Academy of Finland Centre of Excellence in the Philosophy of Social Sciences, April 16, 2015.

“Love and Economics: The Problem of Altruistic Preferences,” American Philosophical Association Pacific Division Meeting (Main Program), April 1, 2015.

“A Problem in Economic Explanation,” University at Buffalo Department of Philosophy, Lunchtime Philosophy Series, March 27, 2015.

“Sexual Objectification and Social Autonomy,” University of Waterloo Gender and Equity Scholarship Series, March 23, 2015.

“Feminist Perspectives on Rational Choice Theory and the Problem of Altruistic Preferences,” Science, Technology, and Gender: Challenges and Opportunities: A conference held with The Association for Feminist Epistemologies, Methodologies, Metaphysics, and Science Studies (FEMMSS) and the Canadian Society for Women in Philosophy (CSWIP), August 2014.

“Dilemmas and Disagreement: Moral Coherence and Justification in Pluralistic Contexts,” Joint Centre for Bioethics, Toronto ON, April 9, 2014.

“Utilitarianism, Intuitions, Rationality and Neuroscience,” co-authored with Rosalind Abdool, American Philosophical Association Central Division Meeting, February 2014 Pittsburgh Area Philosophy Colloquium, Washington and Jefferson College, Saturday, September 21st, 2013.

“The Cold-Blooded Economist is a Dangerous Figure,” Total Money Makeover: Culture and the Economization of Everything, sponsored by the Canadian Association for American Studies, Oct 24, 2013.

“Utilitarianism, Intuitions, Rationality and Neuroscience,” co-authored with Rosalind Abdool, Pittsburgh Area Philosophy Colloquium, Washington and Jefferson College, Saturday, September 21st, 2013 and Central APA February 2014.

“Objectify Me:  Sexual Autonomy and the Utopia of Non-Conformity,” Keynote Address at Queertopia 6.0, Northwestern University, April 2013.

“Sexual Use, Sexual Autonomy, and Adaptive Preferences,” McMaster University, September 2012.

“Philosophy Is Not a Social Science: Value Neutrality, the Humanistic Method, and the Ethical Point of View” Philosophy in the Twenty-First Century Conference, University of Pittsburgh, May 2012.

“Moral Coherence and Value Pluralism,” University of Guelph, September 2011.

“Sexual Autonomy and Sexual Choices,” North American Society for Social Philosophy Twenty-Eighth International Social Philosophy Conference, July 2011.

“On Tom Hurka’s The Best Things in Life,” part of an author-meets-critics session, Canadian Philosophical Association, May 2010.

Page last updated Jan 1, 2023